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Time to push back

Pride month and anti-Christian mockery should prompt a response

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence attend a gay pride parade in West Hollywood, Calif., on June 12, 2016. Associated Press/Photo by Richard Vogel, file

Time to push back
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June is just around the corner, or as a colleague of mine calls it, “corporate psyop month.” Indeed, if you were running a society wide psychological experiment, it’s hard to imagine it would look any different than what “Pride Month” has become. The closest thing we have to a celebration of heterosexuality is the set of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, neither of which lasts an entire month. There is also far less corporate buy-in for celebrating mothers and fathers these days, in spite of the fact those days acknowledge a far larger percentage of the population than pride month celebrates. (Father’s Day is almost drowned out since it occurs in the middle of the month-long rainbow blitzkrieg.) It’s not even June yet, and I just saw a press release for Ford’s “very gay Raptor,” a giant rainbow painted truck the company drives around to demonstrate “allyship.”

Now I know better than to be optimistic about the cultural direction of America, but there are lessons that normies can learn about pushing back and reclaiming some neutral space. Most recently, the Los Angeles Dodgers announced that they had cancelled an appearance by a gay activist group, the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, at the ballclub’s pride celebration next month, following public objections by Sen. Marco Rubio, the Catholic League, and other prominent voices. That spawned a backlash to the backlash, and the Dodgers sent out a Maoist, groveling message about the need to “better educate ourselves” and reinstated the appearance of the group.

The bigger question is how this group got invited in the first place. The group’s entire reason for being is dressing up as salacious nuns and conducting profane acts that mock the Catholic church. In 1987, during the visit of Pope John Paul II to San Francisco, the group conducted a mock “public exorcism” rite of the pope that earned it a spot on the papal list of heretics. Almost every event the group hosts is too sexual and profane even to describe. Even in liberal L.A., the Dodgers have no shortage of Hispanic Catholic fans. One can only imagine their reaction to showing up at a ballgame with the family and seeing dudes on the field wearing a nun’s wimple and fishnet stockings.

To be clear, the Dodgers didn’t cancel Pride night—that would be unthinkable in 21st century America—they merely attempted to cancel an egregiously offensive and unnecessary part of it. And yet, the reaction to The Dodgers from the left was so extreme I can’t imagine it’s going to help the gay community. The larger LA Pride organization threatened to pull out of the Dodgers event in solidarity, sending the bizarre message that the only way to properly celebrate pride month is to insist on lewdly mocking Christians. That’s a message that I doubt even a majority of gay people would agree with.

We need to make corporate America feel pain if that’s what it takes for it to act respectfully toward middle America.

As for the Dodgers, they should note that large brands have good reason to be spooked about going too far pushing social progressivism. Anheuser-Busch’s market cap has lost billions in value since the backlash to the decision to put trans influencer and captain of the TikTok drama club Dylan Mulvaney on cans of Bud Light. The boycott was almost an entirely organic revulsion to Mulvaney’s crude mockery of real women, to say nothing of the fact that the beer company’s rich coastal marketing executives are so dumb and woke they don’t even know how not to be contemptuous of their core customers. Anheuser-Busch is desperate to win back sales and its latest move is to print special edition camo covered cans of Bud Light that benefit a charity for veterans. Of course, even the military is advertising with drag queens these days. I have my doubts whether this desperate attempt at pandering to middle America will work.

But so far, the Bud Light saga looks more like an anomaly than a sign that corporations have gone too far pushing an agenda. As we see with the Dodgers, those that are more committed to the cause and better organized are frequently going to win—even when what they’re advocating is extreme and appalling to the majority of Americans.

Even 20 years ago it would have seemed absurd to have to insist celebrations of gay Americans should respect the wishes of tens of millions of Americans who don’t want to see public displays of irresponsible sexual behavior, or to see religious faith openly mocked. Similarly, it’s not much to ask of large corporations that depend on our dollars to not validate the sexual manifestations of mental illness that are resulting in the mutilation and sterilization of confused children.

Those of us who are concerned about living in a world where driving a truck, cracking open a beer, or taking the kids to a ballgame involves confronting the worst excesses of sexual politics are long overdue to actually organize. We need to make corporate America feel pain if that’s what it takes for it to act respectfully toward middle America. We have some very reasonable—and achievable—demands to start making.

Mark Hemingway

Mark Hemingway is a senior writer at RealClearInvestigations and the books editor at The Federalist. He was formerly a senior writer at The Weekly Standard, a columnist and editorial writer for the Washington Examiner, and a staff writer at National Review. He is the recipient of a Robert Novak Journalism fellowship and was a two-time Global Prosperity Initiative Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He was a 2014 Lincoln Fellow of The Claremont Institute and a Eugene C. Pulliam Distinguished Fellow in Journalism at Hillsdale College in 2016. He is married to journalist and Fox News contributor Mollie Hemingway, and they have two daughters.

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